I'm wanting to build a new computer but I'm having trouble, it's been a long time since I've built one and my head is starting to spin just looking at the options for motherboards.

So you know what I'm working with this is my empty tower -> NZXT Source 210 Elite White Steel with painted interior ATX Mid Tower, 1 x USB 3.0 / 1 x USB 2.0 / Audio Front Ports, 3 External 5.25" Drive Bays, 8 Internal 3.5" Drive Bays.

I'm getting really confused browsing newegg motherboard opitons:

Don't know what socket type I need or want.
Don't know what chipset I need or want.
CPU type?
I know I would like about 8 SATA 6 GB/s for all my HDDs but I have no idea how many SATA 3 or 1.5 GB/s I need?
What the heck is M.2?
I thought USB 3.0 was backwards compatible, is there any reason to have USB 2.0 ports? What's the difference between USB 3.0 & 3.1?
What kind and how many PCI slots do I need?

Linux is my main OS so everything needs to be compatible with Linux, I might also have two other HDDs and or partitions for Windows and or SteamOS for gaming should a gaming mood come over me. I'm gong to be running 2 or 3 operating systems including Linux over probably 5 or 6 HDDs at least. I need somethign that will support my case's front 2.0 & 3.0 USB ports and my case's front audio and mic ports, and at least 6-8 USB ports in the back. Any help would be appreciated, I've been out of the hardware game for a while.

You had me till that many SATA ports. I think you should use some PCIe board for more ports if need be.

About shopping boards, the socket changes with your CPU selection (most of the time)

USB 3 ports so far support all my USB 1.x and 2.x devices.

If I were to build today I would not create a new combination. I'd steal designs from PCMR at https://www.reddit.com/r/PCMasterRace/wiki/builds

Thanks. I would prefer 8 SATA ports but I might be able to get buy with 6.

I'm looking over some of the builds and comparing motherboards and processors on newegg and amazon too. When making sure that a motherboard and a processor are compatible do I need to be paying more attention to the chipset or the CPU socket type? Thanks.

I have to go with "I wouldn't do that." If I were to pick only boards with more than the usual 4 or so ports my choices get slim or expensive.

Most folk pick a CPU then the board to support the CPU choice. I don't know the goals but that many drives doesn't mean more CPU power. Nod to "Amdahl tried to quantify the characteristics of a well balanced computer in three “laws”."

In your case you elected to find 8 or more SATA ports so you find those then see where the chips fall.

Have you seen this video about coin mining using dozens of drives?
Watch https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nJ4ea5NNqcg
Off topic but there are machines for holding dozens of drives today.

Haven't watched that video yet but I did build a coin miner with two milk crates as a case. In this case I already have, well, my case, so I'm stuck with what I've get there. Again, I think I can probably get by with 6 SATAs. If I pick a processor first I'm still lost as to weather or not I need to be paying attention to the socket or the chipset?

As to socket and chipset. I rarely find any gain in choosign chipsets but as you can guess, the socket, chipset and BIOS must list the CPU you choose.

That is, the motherboard maker will have a page about compatible CPUs for the board we are looking at.

About Ryzen builds. Be sure the BIOS is up to date before you commit to the OS install that you are going to run for a long time. That is, update the BIOS per the maker. If that requires some OS installed then my choice to isntall the OS, update and then wipe out and then setup the BIOS to my choices.

My choices are ofter factory BIOS defaults with as few changes as required. This makes it easy if the CMOS battery ever dies. I can't count how many times a builder required the BIOS to be just so for the OS to boot. No need to damn the user years later.

So once the BIOS is up to date and setup, then I can go about my OS setup.

Sounds complicated. Never done anything but through all the pieces in a box, insert a USB, CD, or DVD, and install the OS of my choice from an ISO file. Maybe I should go with something else.

Something else would still have me update the BIOS then setup BIOS and then the OS. This isn't really a new thing but with Ryzens the BIOS can matter. It's a minor bit of work that I always get done before I commit to using it long term (regardless of CPU choice.)

Okay so I read the reviews for this processor on amazon and it doesn't seem to be the best choice for a Linux user. Can we simplifi this a bit? I'll choose a motherboard later that matches the processor. Can you tell me a good processor that is good for gaming and works well with Linux?
I recently tried playing Dying Light on my current Linux Mint system and the game began to slow down considerably during a pursuit.

This is what I've got.

AMD A10-6700 APU

Here's two that I'm looking at:

AMD FX 4-Core Black Edition FX-4300, FD4300WMHKBOX
Intel Core i5-2400 3.10 GHz Quad-Core Processor

Back when I was a kid it was easy to tell what was what and how powerfull one processor was compared to another. Today when I look at processors I have no idea what I'm looking at. I see a bunch of numbers and letters that have little to no meaning to me. I can't tell if either one of these is better, worse, or the same as what I already have.

Ahh, gaming taps more than the CPU. My current fav build is kind of a monster. It's the usual i7, 16GB RAM, 1050 or better GPU and no hard disks. SSD has come way down in price so I usually pop in the 512GB SSD. These machines fly.

As to the GPU choice, see what Linux heads are writing about AMD or Nvidia. But if I were to build on a budget I'm back to PCMR builds.

Thanks. My only problem with PCMR was most of them are using the Ryzens and Amason reviews is showing them to be a little bit of a pain when it comes to Linux. Then again seeing as how that's what the PCMR builds are using maybe the guys posting the reviews on amazon don't know what they're talking about and the Ryzens are really fine for Linux.

Way OT, cool member name.

Next week I'm resurrecting an old HP d5000t with core 2 quad. I have some new bits for it. New single rail PSU, a 1050 Ti, SSD and we'll see if it lives on as a C2Q.